Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Degas Clapotis

My spring Clapotis is complete. I am almost sorry to let it go, but she already has a home draped around the neck of a friend. I hope she likes her birthday present.

Pattern: Clapotis by Kate Gilbert
Needles: Boye US 6
Yarn: Koigu Painter's Palate Premium Merino
Mods: Smaller needles and yarn substitution

Just for good measure I wore it for a few hours today to "test it out". It was a perfect April Day for this lovely, light scarf. I hope my little ballerina enjoys this Degas inspired scarf. "Step right up, just like a ballerina." ~Van Morrison

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

To Oil Company CEO's:

Go Fuck Yourself and stop Fucking us!

In case you can't see that price in full because of the pole it says $3.73 for 87. Now I know that some out west are suffering a bit more. When reading Crazy Aunt Purls recent entry I saw that LA gas prices have soared to $3.85 a gallon, and even crazier in Hawaii, $4.00. I today I felt this tsunami moving eastward when I glanced at the gas sign as I was driving home and almost drove into a pole. What the fuck is going on? I want to kick politicians in the shins really hard and scream, "FIX IT YOU ASSHOLES!"

Feeling impotent with rage I did the only thing a reasonable person could do: I bought sock yarn and ice cream.

Well, maybe the only thing a reasonable knitter could do :) isn't it pretty? It's Trekking Handart in Feuerland. I think I will be making a very simple sock with this to show off the yarn. Perhaps I'll try my hand at toe-up socks for something new.

I know I said I would be performing birch surgery soon, but I feel like I should take it to my LYS to get some assistance from the lovely ladies there. So hopefully she will be fixed by the end of the week :::crosses fingers:::. In other Birch related news I have started a new one in Rowan Kidsilk Night Starlight:

I am about six repeats in right now. Glimmering Birch [ravelry] is for one of my Mom's co-worker's. She saw my Birch and decided she had to have one of her own. So this is my first commissioned knitted piece. I have no idea what to charge for something like this? I was thinking a certain price, then the women at Sticks and Stings said, NO, $300 at least!" That seems a bit high to me, but perhaps I am not thinking about the true value of the piece. A hand-knit lace shawl with Rowan KSN--how much should it be worth?

On to the boring knitting: I am making a Clapotis out of Koigu KPPPM for a friend's birthday.

Of course, I ran out of yarn. I searched on Ravelry for the correct amount of KPPPM to use, and the average was three. So I bought three. Three was not enough. So I called Sticks and Strings and had them hold another skein for me. This pattern is a serious snore, but I have to finish it for the b-day deadline. So I am treating this project like a band-aid: rip it off quick to avoid unnecessary pain. I'm almost done with it. I am sure a FO post will be in the near future.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Spring Awakening

When I was in college writing papers I always found the hardest part was the introduction. How to craft a thesis in a way that would be stimulating, alluring, and intelligent sounding. Luckily, this is my own narcissistic knitting blog where I don't have to worry about all that bullshit, right? :) So hello and welcome to my little attempt to be a part of and give back to a world that has inspired me and given me more joy than I could have hoped for.

When I was first "getting into" knitting again I spent hours (fellow knitting blog stalkers will understand) reading and falling in love with this beautiful craft. I was so inspired by the lot and talent of the work I saw being created every day and thought to myself, " maybe I can do this too?" So I jumped right in and never plan on looking back.

So what prompted me to begin this little blog? Today when I woke up I saw the sun shining in a perfect, cloudless blue sky and felt a sense of peace and joy I haven't felt since dreary winter began. I got up, planted some pansies, drank some coffee and sat in the sun and knit (it was 75 degrees out today!). It was divine. I realized how such a small thing as knitting in the sunshine could make me so perfectly happy. I think sharing this happiness and beauty with others can only lead to spreading happiness and beauty to those who seek it, as the wonderful people who have shared their own joy before. I hope to be able to contribute to this love movement in my own way. Who says Plato and knitting aren't related?!

On to the knitting!

Now even though I am trying to spread happiness and joy there are always bumps along the way, which bring me to the first order of business. My first attempt at lace was indeed a success--the Birch Shawl [ravelry] by Sharon Miller from Rowan 34. I fell in love with this patten long ago and made a promise to myself to make it when I felt my knitting skills were up to par. I made her out of Alpaca with a Twist Fino, which is a dream to knit with.

As I was taking this picture I noticed something truly terrible--a dropped stitch! When it was blocked this wonky stitch was nowhere to be seen, but in the sunlight everything become apparent. I swore loudly, took it down and folded it until I could speak to someone who could tell me how to fix such a terrible and disastrous mistake. Insert here Lucy Neatby, the knitting genius from Halifax circa Wales. Lucy came to my fabulous LYS, The Cornwall Yarn Shop, to teach a few classes and stretch our awe of her knitting skills to unimaginable depths. She told me to put a pin in it first, don't wave it around too much, and to perform a "duplicate stitch technique" to disguise this retched stitch and no one would be the wiser. Fabulous! A genius she is, I say! But how do you do a duplicate stitch? This question was answered for me when I took her 6 hour class on Intarsia the very next day. So my Birch now sits at the bench at the end of my bed, sweating, anticipating the surgery that will be performed within the next day.

Speaking of the Intarsia Workshop and Lucy, did I mention she is amazing?! Here is a small swatch of Intarsia which I spent the 6 hours of class creating, and yet, still have more to do on it.

I learned SO MUCH. Really, rent or buy her DVDs--she is fabulously cool, a great teacher, a genius and has pink hair. What could be better? I don't know? Possibly her MacBook Air, which is encased in hot pink to match her hair;) Amazing!